Religion, education and music—in that order. These are the principles that Huldah Kloepper followed for raising her children. When her daughter, Millie, married Dan Hurley they enthusiastically adopted these standards for raising their five sons.
Today, Joe Hurley ’64 and his brother Pat ’68 are furthering their parents’ ideals by creating an endowed scholarship in their memory—the Daniel C. and Myldred M. Hurley Memorial Scholarship.
“Our parents grew up in modest circumstances and deeply valued education,” says Joe. “Our dad graduated at the top of his high school class in Hannibal, Missouri, and attended Saint Louis University. He was the first in our family to earn a college degree.”
He adds, “Mom was salutatorian of her high school class in Sparta, Illinois. She graduated at the top of her nursing class in 1966, 27 years and five children after high school. It was hard work, and we were all very proud of her accomplishment.”
Joe and Pat’s brothers Kevin ’71 and Tom ’77 also attended SLUH. They were followed by Joe’s son Edward ’91. A third generation, Ed’s sons Walter ’24 and Carl ’25, are currently enrolled.
Joe reflects, “Some teachers, whose dedication conveyed the belief we are meant to be present for others, have remained lifelong role models. While at SLUH, football and track provided a balance to academics, yet watching my son—and now grandsons—compete as Jr. Billikens has been even more satisfying. Fortunately, I’ve remained close to classmates whose recollections are particularly comforting at this stage of my life.”
“The most important thing I learned at SLUH was how to think critically,” says Pat. “For example, our Theology teachers emphasized the importance of having a world view of other religions and perspectives. They encouraged us to have an open mind and to think independently.”
Joe earned BS and MD degrees at the University of Missouri–Columbia. He later returned to St. Louis to practice surgery and raise nine children with the love of his life, Ellen. Since retirement, he spends time with St. Vincent de Paul, Surgical Outreach for the Americas (where he still practices surgery), playing poker and hiking.
Pat graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a degree in Industrial Engineering. He had a consulting career in the energy industry with clients worldwide. He and his wife, Laurie Oppel, are retired and live on a lake near Knoxville, Tennessee. In retirement Pat serves at several nonprofit organizations and enjoys making pottery.
Reflecting on their motivation to give back to SLUH in such a significant way, Joe and Pat concur, “Our parents were strongly motivated by religion and education throughout their lives. We’re honoring our parents by providing talented teenagers a choice in their academic development. SLUH excels in that role and has developed its program and campus in a thoughtful and strategic way. That gives us trust that our investment will be put to good use for years to come.”
To boost the impact of the new scholarship, Pat and Laurie are directing a planned gift to SLUH to bring the funding level to a Presidential Scholarship.* Once fully funded, three students will be recognized annually as “Hurley Scholars.”
Joe and Pat emphasize that their gift is an investment in the youths attending SLUH, and their impact on the community and beyond. “We hope this scholarship will help students by enabling them to better their communities and strengthen their own families in ways that would make our parents proud.”
Like Joe and Pat, you can invest in SLUH by creating an endowed fund or using a gift in your estate plan to help future students. Contact Linda Domeyer at firstname.lastname@example.org or (314) 269-2113 to learn more about giving options.
* A Presidential Scholarship requires a minimum commitment of $1,000,000. Benefactors who establish a Presidential Scholarship are invited to develop criteria for the school to determine who will be publicly awarded the scholarship. Selected students, who are beneficiaries of financial aid, are proudly recognized with their association to the Presidential Scholarship. Learn more.